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I get around

Rodney Durham stopped working in 1991, declared bankruptcy and lives on Social Security. Nonetheless, Wells Fargo lent him $15,197 to buy a used Mitsubishi sedan. “I am not sure how I got the loan,” Mr. Durham, age 60, said.

Mr. Durham’s application said that he made $35,000 as a technician at Lourdes Hospital in Binghamton, N.Y., according to a copy of the loan document. But he says he told the dealer he hadn’t worked at the hospital for more than three decades. Now, after months of Wells Fargo pressing him over missed payments, the bank has repossessed his car.
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The thermometer showed a 103.5-degree fever, and her 10-year-old’s asthma was flaring up. Mary Bolender, who lives in Las Vegas, needed to get her daughter to an emergency room, but her 2005 Chrysler van would not start. The cause was not a mechanical problem — it was her lender.

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This is the face of the new subprime boom. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Oct 1, 2014 - 67 comments

Google unveils a self-driving car

Today Google unveiled their purpose-built self-driving car prototype, complete with no steering wheel, brake, or gas pedals. You just jump in, and go. The demo video is pretty impressive, and even the funnier Kara Swisher video of her first ride makes it look kind of fun. [more inside]
posted by mathowie on May 27, 2014 - 412 comments

Do you want to be perceived as rich and cuddly? Of course you do!

Volvo Blå: A Swede named PonyHans wants you to Buy His Volvo. [SLYT]
posted by Room 641-A on May 17, 2014 - 10 comments

The Cozy Coupe goes street legal.

The classic yellow-and-red children's pedal car now has a grown-up version: a UK auto specialist has modified a Daewoo Matiz to look like a Cozy Coupe. It is fully functioning and legal for UK roads, though the lack of windshield means it's rather breezy to drive. From the BBC News video: "John Bitmead constructed an adult-sized copy of a Little Tikes toy car, which takes petrol, has a tax disc, and can reach speeds of up to 70mph (110km/h). Costing £4,000 to build, it also includes an airbag, headlights and mirrors." The car will be used to raise money for children's charities.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl on Jan 31, 2014 - 13 comments

"I only hope Michael Schumacher pulls through..."

"...so that he can see all of the nice things people are saying about him." Like this. Michael Schumacher, arguably one of the greatest auto racers ever, is fighting for his life after a freak ski accident on Sunday in Grenoble. [more inside]
posted by glaucon on Dec 31, 2013 - 65 comments

Ought to Focus

On Sunday I covered what was easily the hardest football game I've ever been asked to shoot. In turn it was the most fun I've ever had on an assignment.
The blizzard-like conditions this past Sunday rendered his auto-focus useless, but for photojournalist Kyle Grantham, the challenge didn't stop him from capturing incredible photographs.
posted by spiderskull on Dec 10, 2013 - 27 comments

Survived by his dog, Spot.

Calvin Coolidge "Cal" Worthington and his "dog", Spot, were fixtures on 1970's TV in Southern California. [more inside]
posted by Sophie1 on Sep 9, 2013 - 79 comments

How A Gasoline Car Engine Works

Given the number of automotive related questions on Ask MeFi, this animated infographic should be useful for most of us. And even if you are a gear head you'll probably think it's cool. (It takes a few seconds to load - give it time.)
posted by COD on Sep 5, 2013 - 31 comments

BBC Documentary - Das Auto: The Germans, Their Cars and Us

Das Auto - the British Obsession with Germany and it's industrial Power continues (recent MeFi Discussion here) - while Top Gear tries to show with a Tribute that British Car Manufacturing is still alive and kicking.
posted by homodigitalis on Aug 5, 2013 - 10 comments

Kant Stop The Trolley

The Ethics of Saving Lives With Autonomous Cars Are Far Murkier Than You Think
posted by spiderskull on Jul 30, 2013 - 58 comments

The best car we have ever tested. Ever.

Consumer Reports says the Tesla Model S is a truly remarkable car.
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes on May 9, 2013 - 251 comments

Now watch this drive

The Verge (video) and the New York Times (text) push the Tesla Model S electric car to its limits
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Feb 12, 2013 - 126 comments

Woman Motorists? Ain't that the Berries!

In 1929, three young women (Edith, Dorothy, and Evelyn), ages 23 and 25, went on a three-month-long, 12,353-mile road trip. Learn more about their experience, and follow an effort to recreate the journey, at Three Months by Car. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Jan 27, 2013 - 22 comments

The iEconomy

The iEconomy: Apple and Technology Manufacturing. Since January, the New York Times has been running a series of articles "examining the challenges posed by increasingly globalized high-tech industries," with a focus on Apple's business practices. The seventh article in the series was published today: In Technology Wars, Using the Patent as a Sword. Related: For Software, Cracks in the Patent System and Fighters in the Patent War. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 8, 2012 - 16 comments

Not to be confused with 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Hey! Do you like auto racing? Perhaps you’ve wished to see a race featuring a Ford 150 pickup body mounted backwards on a Crown Vic chassis. Or maybe a two-stroke/three-cylinder powerhouse 1967 Saab, complete with Antarctic emergency airdrop sled mounted to the roof. Or even a totally ludicrous self-powered pop-out camper. [more inside]
posted by Existential Dread on Aug 3, 2012 - 16 comments

Carbon fiber for the One Percenters

An extended look inside [30:21] the production facility of innovative Swedish "hypercar" manufacturer Koenigsegg.
posted by Burhanistan on Jun 6, 2012 - 31 comments

Junkyard Silver.

Chromeography is a tumblr devoted to images of chrome: the lettering, logos, and ornaments adorning old automobiles (and bicycles and cameras and appliances).
posted by gamera on May 23, 2012 - 8 comments

No Chevy, Just Chase.

4 non-supercharged Model A Fords from 1931 rack around a gravel course in 2012.
posted by Smart Dalek on Mar 31, 2012 - 26 comments

Traffic Drives Nigerians Nuts, but a Trip to a Shrink May Go Too Far

People often think that other drivers are nuts. The Nigerian authorities have taken things a step further, now requiring drivers accused of going the wrong way down a one way street to get psychiatric exams.
posted by reenum on Jul 27, 2011 - 22 comments

Braindriver

Braindriver is a car that allows you to steer, accelerate and decelerate with nothing more than the faint electrical signals generated by the brain.
posted by jason's_planet on Mar 5, 2011 - 13 comments

That story is true I'm here to say, 'cause I was driving that Model A

I’m Jonathan Klinger and I’m spending one full year driving a 1930 Model A everywhere I go. (Starting October 13, 2010) Why? Because not everything a person owns should contain a computer. 365 days of A
posted by fixedgear on Feb 12, 2011 - 38 comments

Call the wahmbulance?

The ambulance that was used to carry the body of John F. Kennedy from Andrews Air Force Base to Bethesda Naval Hospital was sold at auction last night for $120,000. Or was it? [more inside]
posted by fixedgear on Jan 23, 2011 - 10 comments

Lost in (video) translation

With crazy hair and wacky body movements, Detroit Free Press columnist Scott Burgess embraces new media and squeezes it to death. Vlogging the bulleted list.
posted by nayrb5 on Jan 13, 2011 - 14 comments

Business in the Front, Party in the Back

After nixing the idea a year ago, Chevy is again toying with the idea of bringing back the El Camino in 2015. The car will be modeled after the Holden Ute, a popular vehicle in Australia.
posted by reenum on Dec 17, 2010 - 68 comments

Town & Country & Infinity

Chrysler's recent announcement of a three year technical collaboration with NASA continues the automaker's long involvement with the agency, including production of the historic Redstone, reliable Jupiter, and mighty Saturn launch vehicles, and the design of an unusual Space Shuttle called SERV. [more inside]
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on May 17, 2010 - 5 comments

Auto Smiley

:)
posted by slater on Mar 24, 2010 - 30 comments

The More I Drink, the More This Congress Is Makin' Sense ...

Auto-Tune the News #10. The Auto-Tune folks come out with their next tune, and, like most of their ouevre so far, darn if they don't make Congress sound catchy. Sing about that turtle fence, Hoekstra baby!
posted by WCityMike on Feb 23, 2010 - 36 comments

How to start and operate a Ford Model T

How to start and drive a Model T
posted by loquacious on Jun 30, 2009 - 26 comments

Dedication to your car: a $300,000 parking space.

"There's only so many parking spaces in the city," said Sordillo. "And in this part, there's very few." A private parking space in Boston's Back Bay area sold for $300,000.
posted by jaimev on Jun 11, 2009 - 60 comments

Taking back the catalytic converter.

Bob Barr and Ralph Nader support the Right to Repair Act of 2009 -- to protect the rights of consumers to diagnose, service, maintain, and repair their motor vehicles. [more inside]
posted by puckish on May 20, 2009 - 271 comments

Your Cheatin' Car....

Do you cheat? Do you have a car? Sorry.
posted by KevinSkomsvold on Jan 29, 2009 - 89 comments

My SUV seats two

Britney Spears loves Japan for its tiny cars. Tiny cars are huge in Japan. But Americans are not very big on very small cars. Nonetheless, automakers may bring tiny microcars to the U.S.. The trick will be making money on smaller cars. Small cars are nothing new, but soon they may be cool.
posted by twoleftfeet on Dec 17, 2008 - 98 comments

From 0 to 60 to World Domination

"Engineers Rule" and "The Toyota Way": How Toyota and Honda have bested the Big Three.
posted by rollbiz on Nov 25, 2008 - 131 comments

Vanhacking

In a time before the Prius, the custom conversion van ruled the roadways. Pushing the boundaries of the airbrush form, testing the limits of mobile interior design, featuring the latest in automatic pink leather bed, compact toaster, 8-track, and love machine technology, the 70s van was celebrated in song and cinema. You started with a factory model, new or used, and ended at a place limited onlyby your creativity, your budget, and your old lady's patience (NSFW). Ford could make you a man.If push came to shove, you could even live in your van. It was fantasy on wheels: van-tastic, man. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Jul 18, 2008 - 43 comments

Urban Tentacles

Interzone interchanges: Can GPS get a driver off of, or keep a driver off of...these things? (via)
posted by Kronos_to_Earth on May 22, 2008 - 19 comments

Jalopnik Ad Watch

Feeling nostalgic for cheap gas and and a "poke-through air cleaner that jumps when the engine cries"? The Mustang Mach I was the way to swing in '69! But 9 years later, the Cougar XR-7 was the 1978 choice of Cheryl Tiegs for her midnight driving. Speaking of women, what if your wife has to drive alone? It's a shocking concept, sure, but when a woman's at the wheel, you need Polyglas tires. Yep, crazy things used to happen. Heck, Pontiac even sold this thing for a few years. All that and more at Jalopnik's classic ad watch.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner on May 17, 2008 - 20 comments

RIP Boyd Coddington.

RIP Boyd Coddington. American Hot Rod star and wheel maker is doing a big burnout in the sky.
posted by fixedgear on Feb 28, 2008 - 20 comments

Lee press-on car

The Tata Nano (pic) is a car that costs less new than the amount I've spent on gas during single car trips, recently announced to the auto market in India. The Chery QQ ^, successful , widely exported, and recognized as the Hostage Taker's Vehicle of Choice by China Car Times, is the runner-up for the world's cheapest car but is still approximately twice as expensive. Yes indeed, the price of gas is not going to come back down. So much for my coast-to-coast road trips. [more inside]
posted by XMLicious on Feb 3, 2008 - 42 comments

Keep the Jaws of Life on standby

Disappearing Car Door: Damn, this is cool. Everyone will want one. Until the inevitable car accident which renders it unopenable.
posted by bwg on Nov 27, 2007 - 60 comments

Maybe they're talking about the paint job

A two-ton 21-mpg 8-passenger V8 Chevy Tahoe? America, meet your 2008 Green Car of the Year!
posted by dead_ on Nov 27, 2007 - 95 comments

Earl Ma 1971-2007: RIP The Flyin' Hawaiian

Automotive journalist, cartoonist and architect Earl Ma passed away this week after a three year battle with cancer. But you would never have known it from how he lived his life. Last month, he refused to let his partial paralysis keep him away from the Indianapolis 500 (though fellow Hawaiian Jim Nabors was too ill to attend), and with the help of friends covered the race from his wheelchair. His boundless energy, generosity and wide range of talents earned him many friends and admirers, and he is already greatly missed.
posted by Scram on Jun 12, 2007 - 2 comments

Electronic Stability Control mandated in all vehicles by 2012

All your donuts are belong to us. The US government has mandated that by 2012, all new vehicles must have Electronic Stability Control. ESC senses when a driver may lose control of the vehicle and automatically applies brakes to individual wheels to help stabilize it and avoid a rollover.
posted by jaimev on Apr 26, 2007 - 39 comments

General Motors Heritage Center houses four decades of GM's electric drive vehicles

General Motors Heritage Center houses four decades of GM's electric drive vehicles (via Digg)
posted by 445supermag on Mar 13, 2007 - 4 comments

Some people really love their cars.

Auto Erotica. Chris, 38, has a recognised psychological condition that makes him physically attracted to motors. (via)
posted by inconsequentialist on Mar 11, 2007 - 72 comments

Huge classic car find in barn in Portugal

Imagine you live in Portugal and you're moving into a lovely farm house on a large swath of land. The place has been empty for 15 years! While exploring your new property you find a large barn in the trees. The door is padlocked shut and its all rusted solid. so you grind the padlock open... [more inside]
posted by MegoSteve on Feb 18, 2007 - 70 comments

iffy jiffy

The dangers of Jiffy Lube in which the average customer pays for services never rendered. (.asx video)
posted by The Jesse Helms on Aug 27, 2006 - 45 comments

Row, row, row your car.

HumanCar (note: 6.7mb WMV) row, row, row your car... but it's telling that they show it going downhill, but not up. And will you need 3 friends whenever you need to run to the store? More videos, and information here.
posted by crunchland on Aug 23, 2006 - 12 comments

KITT cogworks

"Knight Rider, a shadowy flight into the dangerous world of a man who does not exist." [audio] These people are cool, they have the cars to prove it. So can you. And then go to the convention. One man's shadowy journey. Could Heat Vision be next?[utube]
posted by bigmusic on Apr 4, 2006 - 35 comments

Carthedral

"Q: Is that another car on top?
 A: Yes, it's a VW bug."
-- Carthedral. A few more (clearer, daylight) photos here.
posted by Gator on Feb 19, 2006 - 27 comments

Around the world on 8 litres of fuel?

Around the world on 8 litres of fuel? I'd be more excited about this if the automotive industry hadn't been teasing us with cool, feature laden concept cars for years, and then actually producing boring combustion engine sedans.
posted by Fozzie on Jun 29, 2005 - 10 comments

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